Monday, May 23, 2022

Voorhees, Marlton residents cited for service in Jewish community

Tacos and Tequila event returns after a two-year hiatus

After a two-year COVID hiatus, the Friends of Jewish Senior Housing will be bringing back the Tacos and Tequila event on May 12th at Congregation Beth El in Voorhees.

Friends’ Chair, Aimee Levin and Lions Gate Director of Philanthropy, Lisa Goldwasser are looking forward to having a successful event with the proceeds benefiting residents of Lions Gate and The Saltzman House. Attendees can participate in a silent auction, a pop-up designer jewelry shop and purchase raffle tickets (The Big Tamale) for a tropical destination.

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“We’re following all CDC guidelines; in order to attend, you must be vaccinated,” Levin stated. “In addition, a tented area will be available and we are doing everything we can to make people feel comfortable.’

“There are so many awesome auction items available” said Goldwasser. “The Big Tamale raffle is a trip for 6 to a choice of 3 amazing destinations. Each raffle ticket is $180 and there are only 250 available.”

Among the honorees for the event are Michael Frankel, a Voorhees resident, who will receive the Ethel J. David award for his service on the Friends’ executive board and finance committee, as well as his commitment to the Lions Gate community. 

Frankel recalled “I got involved because of my friend Larry Gottileb, who was on the board of Lions Gate and Jewish Senior housing … and I said to him as a joke, ‘You’re always going to all of these meetings, why don’t you let me come?’ “Next thing you know, I was nominated, and I would say it was one of the better things a friend has done for me.” 

Frankel said service was something he learned growing up, but getting involved and donating time can be much more valuable than just opening your wallet. Building relationships with fellow board members is something Frankel cherishes, as he commends their hard work in what can be a thankless job. 

“I saw this as another way to show my kids that it’s more than just writing an annual check for dues, or to the synagogue,” he noted. “Going to meetings and having a voice will help seniors in the community.

“The board members don’t volunteer for the glamour,” Frankel added. “Every person here truly cares about our community, Lions Gate, the Federation, the JCC, everything. Every person has that mentality.”

The Sis Levy award will go to Marlton’s Ann and Paul Simon for their commitment and involvement in the Friends of Jewish Senior Housing. 

“I was involved before Paul,” said Ann. “Both of our parents moved here from Florida. I was very blessed to move them into senior housing and I got involved immediately. It was important to us.”

Paul added, “We always volunteered but wanted to specifically get involved with seniors. We volunteered to serve dinner and helped out with Shabbat services,”. “We are now involved with the Jewish Senior Housing and we volunteer there regularly.”

 Ann noted. “Our seniors were our trailblazers for us, who made this country what it is today. I think we have a responsibility in Jewish culture; it’s a part of us to give back to those who have less … ” The Simons have been part of Tacos and Tequila since it began.

“Tacos and Tequila is incredible“ said Paul. “We know a lot of these people in the community. It’s such a caring group; it’s a group of people that just get it.”

Tacos and Tequila will offer attendees the opportunity to sample a variety of artisanal and time-honored tequilas, along with specialty drinks and cuisine with a Latin flair. A margarita bar with sparkling wine and beer will also be offered, along with non-alcoholic beverages. 

To donate or buy tickets at $118 a person, visit the Lions Gate website.

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